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I'd really appreciate anyone's view on how I can solve my problem.

What I've got
I have three bricks and mortar shops, selling new and second hand goods, mainly small electrical goods. We also do small pawnbroking-type loans.


My problem
I've inherited a Borland Paradox db that manages stock and sales, also the pawns. It also lets us register people as customers. But the db isn't networked, so the stores aren't linked.

Thus if a customer registers at store A, he's unknown in store B.

And staff in store A have no way of seeing if store B or C has any Wiis.


What I need
A programmer can convert the db to MySQL quite easily, it seems (I'm not a programmer).

But getting the data in and out of the db seems a lot more complicated.

A freelance programmer suggested writing some VB code for this, but then shied away when he saw the scale of the task.

Others have suggested getting a retail db application and amending it. But so far I've only found dbs for online shops (which are much simpler things). I haven't come across standard shop DBs I can amend.

What would you recommend?

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Last Post by sadgrove
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Just thinking outside the box a little... you could use a program that gives you remote access to a computer, such as PC anywhere, or by using VPN.

Of course, you can always use MySQL or MSSQL, etc., as a backend and use php, VB.NET, etc. as a frontend, but that can get pricey. However, I do think that would be the more "proper" way to do it over remote login solutions.

As far as using an existing solution and modifying it for your needs... there's nothing wrong with that, but you will need to find someone to do substantial programming for you, which could be just as expensive as hiring someone to start from scratch since they have to learn how the existing database is programmed.

If time and price is an issue and you already have a solution that works on a LAN, I would think of using remote access solutions.

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Thanks for these helpful thoughts.

A VPN would be a partial solution, but wouldn't solve the problem of data being in separate silos.

I'm wondering whether I could adapt an online cart like OS Commerce?

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